13 June 2012

Play as Yasser

It is exciting to see Yasser Seirawan returning to active competitive chess. He is from my home state, although living in the Netherlands these days. On the USCF rating list for active players in Washington state, he remains No. 1, where he has been many years.* With him playing again, and with me looking for players to profile for my chess camp next week, I've been looking over some Seirawan's games old and new.

This position comes from the US Open 1975. Seirawan was fourteen years old and had been playing chess roughly two years. It was published as Chess Informant 20/45.

White to move

Seirawan played 35.Re5! Annotators Robert Byrne and Edmar Mednis gave the position after his move as decisive advantage for White. The rook move is perhaps not so difficult to find, as Black must lose the queen to prevent checkmate. Rather, the previous 34.Bf4! demonstrates Seirawan's understanding of the tactics in the position. From these tactical shots, he achieved a clear positional advantage.

Later in the game, he gave up his queen for the Black bishop in order to promote the c-pawn to another queen.

*I have found myself as high as No. 69, but at the time of this writing stand at 71. The change was not due to my rating changing, but that of others.

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